h a l f b a k e r y
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So, I'm given to understand that computers are really a
load of logic gates and some support hardware. They are
predominantly constructed using various semiconductors,
which are increasingly miniaturized and refined. Some
attempts have been made to construct computers with
such as mechanical relays <link>.
Unfortunately, computers are vulnerable to all sorts of
things: electromagnetic pulses, Diet Coke, too much
electricity, too little electricity, the right amount of
electricity in the wrong place, and so on. Perhaps it's time
for a more robust alternative, not so dependent upon the
the mountain of logistical and supply prerequisites as
current computer construction.
Instead, we can use monkeys <link>. Monkeys are robust,
repairable, replaceable on an individual level, unimpressed
by EMPs and relatively water resistant.
So, to create a Monkey "AND" logic gate, we take one
monkey, and train it to pull a lever when presented with a
handful of peanuts AND a banana. When presented with
ONLY peanuts, or ONLY a banana, the monkey will be
deeply suspicious, due to carefully applied negative
conditioning. Then, after labeling the monkey, you can
place him in the "chip". Really a room, with a couple of
hatches and a lever.
All of the usual logic gates are possible with monkeys, and
what's more,you can rearrange your logic gates by simply
rearranging the monkeys, extra training may even be able
to get the monkeys to re-arrange themselves thus having a
I admit, there are some issues, a 7400 chip would occupy
as much space as a motorhome, and if you want to break
into the MegaFLOPS of processing power, you're going to
need to solve the banana and nut supply issues.
[bs0u0155, Dec 04 2013]
[bs0u0155, Dec 04 2013]
[bs0u0155, Dec 04 2013]
Monkeys are robust, but not always repairable when reformatted in binary [lurch, Dec 07 2013]
Ahem. [MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 09 2013]
||Volunteer humans at a large mostly boring convention might be cheaper and more quickly trained. YOU CAN REVERT TO MONKEYS WHEN YOU GET THE BUGS worked out.
||"We will now have lunch. Please don't touch the skimpily clad waitress serving peanuts and bananas. She has a cattle prod."
||This would be capable of working faster and
with greater accuracy and reliability than a
similar logic array composed of senior
||I realize that the monkey is a large creature, however
this is just the start. Careful selection, then possibly
selective breeding should yield smaller and smaller
monkeys. After sufficient research, rats could
probably be used. Scrambled egg being their favorite
food, this would solve banana-related issues. We
should be able to obey Moore's law for a few years at
||I think the monkey needs to throw out some of the
food, otherwise the monkey will get too fat.
||So if they get a load of peanuts, OR a load of bananas
they need to keep them. But if they get a load of
bananas AND peanuts, they need to throw them out.
||I don't know what they are going to do with the
||All processors have issues. I had an overclocked
Pentium 4 that was very demanding about power
supply and heat removal. In this case it's bananas and
nut in, poop out. Although I've heard monkeys will
hurl poop for their own amusement.
||// I don't know what they are going to do
with the monkey poo //
||Apply gold leaf to it and sell it in a box
labelled " A Genuine Microsoft Product", of
||I think the monkey computer could run some MS
products, the minimum requirements of Windows
3.1 mention a 286 processor. This has 146,000
transistors. However, most logic gates require >2
transistors per gate, so, we only need half as many
monkeys, an inherently efficient design, I'm sure
||I will not be using MS packaging design however,
randomly plastering images, gold stickers, hologram
stickers, bullet points of features and a weird
naming strategy could be done by a monkey. A
TRAINED monkey however could probably do
better. We could leave boxes and some stickers in
the moneky rooms, 75k monkeys will then work on
the packaging in their down time.
||// YOU CAN REVERT TO MONKEYS// ... got that backwards I think.
||//Use the same idea for management and you are
on to something. But for modern games the
banana cost per frame would be too high//
||Using Marmosets*, I can get a logic gate to work on
half a peanut or sultana. Remember, often the
logic gates are rejecting the foods because they're
not presented in the correct configuration. These
can be recycled.
||*miniaturization is a feature of computer
||//After sufficient research, rats could probably be
||At the risk of drawing attention to some prior art,
may I draw your attention to some prior art? (Link)
||//At the risk of drawing attention to some prior
art, may I draw your attention to some prior art?//
||As usual, a promising British idea presented with
no accompanying business acu(wo)men. You went
straight for rats? Hmm. After a marketing campaign
pitting one of my monkeys against one of the rats
in all sorts of trials, public opinion will sway toward
the monkey computer. Everyone knows monkeys
are smarter than rats, right? Also, rat computers
are well known to suffer reliability problems in
jungle environments, you're basic snake issues
||My larger-to-smaller monkey progression will give
the impression of progress... like an irresistible
monkey wave. You'll just be adding more rats...
||All right, it's the same idea. No nicking my
optically-activated transcription-factors-in motile
bacteria as a computer idea though... I'm still
||// Use the same idea for management and
you are on to something //
||Presumably this implements mnemonic
functions via the well documented "Monkey
see, monkey do" effect ...
||I think monkey's should be installed in all newly-
created managerial positions as a baseline.
Subsequently-recruited managers would have to
outperform the monkey or face contract termination.
I suspect about a 50% success rate.
||//optically-activated transcription-factors-in motile
bacteria as a computer idea though//
||Uh, people are working on that too. As well as light-
||//Uh, people are working on that too. As well as
light- emitting bacteria//
||aaggh. Now I'm having a really bad day. Nothing to do
with the, "that figure looks ok, but we need to
||// I suspect about a 50% success rate //
||Have you always been so wildly optimistic ?
Perhaps you should seek counselling.
||Or get married; a sovereign remedy for all